Shetland, or Zetland (Scand. Hjaltland, ' high land'), a group of more than a hundred islands, islets, and skerries, forming the northernmost Scottish county, whose capital, Lerwick, is 116 miles NE. of Kirkwall, 300 N. by E. of Edinburgh, and 222 W. of Bergen in Norway. Extending 70 miles, and 36 in extreme breadth, they have a total area of 551 sq. m., the largest of the twenty-nine inhabited islands being Mainland (378 sq. m.), Yell (83), Unst (47), Fetlar, Bressay, Whalsay, and Foula. The cliff-scenery is very fine, and the sounds and voes, or firths, are so numerous that no spot is more than 3 miles from the sea. The surface is more rugged than that of Orkney, the highest points being Ronas Hill (1475 feet) in Mainland, and the Sneug (1372) in Foula. Metamorphic crystalline rocks predominate, with isolated Old Red Sandstone; and the soil is peaty, barely one-sixth of the total area being in cultivation, whilst trees there are none. The live-stock includes from 100,000 to 120,000 sheep, some 19,000 cattle, and over 5000 shaggy 'shetland ponies,' 9 to 10 hands high. The climate is equable but moist (rainfall, 49 inches); at the longest day the sun sets for only five hours, at the shortest for over eighteen. The herring and other fisheries are the leading industry, having been greatly developed since 1872. Shetland unites with Orkney to return one member to parliament; but it was dissevered therefrom as a county by the Local Government (Scotland) Act, 1889. Pop. (1801) 22,379; (1861)31,679; (1901) 28,185. Subject, like Orkney (q.v.), to the Scandinavian crown until 1468, Shetland - the Ultima Thule of the ancients - is still markedly Norse in many of its characteristics, Norse (spoken in Foula as late as 1774) having bequeathed many words to the Shetland dialect. In 1766 it was sold by the Earl of Morton to the ancestor of the Earls of Zetland, but the present earl's property here is small. See Scott's Pirate; Edmondston's Shetland Glossary (1866); and other works by Brand (1701), Tudor (1883), Sheriff Rampini (1884), and the Rev. J. Russell (1887).